Health Tips for Seniors

Archive for November, 2006

Pain in the colon

Pain. This is a large word and covers a lot of ground, but when it comes from the colon it has several identifying marks. An aching pain in the rectum, with a feeling of fullness and a sensation of continuing bowel movement, sometimes arises from a growth, and should not be ignored. Cramping or griping pain when due to the colon is felt low in the abdomen. When caused by a tumor, the colon attempts to move the unwelcome growth along and these attempts we feel as powerful contractions or cramps.

General symptoms such as loss of weight and general weakness are present in cancer but also in other diseases such as mental disease, gall bladder disease and others, and these difficulties also must be considered. Obviously a competent physician’s examination is necessary to accurately diagnose cancer of the colon.

Abdominal cavity

Fig. 92. Hernias are weak spots in the abdominal wall, usually resulting from inherited muscle and fascial weakness. Popular fallacy, based on legal compensation, places the blame on injury incurred at work.

Treatment of colon cancer is strictly a surgical procedure, essentially consisting in removing the segment of colon containing the cancer. The problem is a complex one and the operation must be done by an experienced surgeon. The prospects of complete recovery are very good when the cancer is discovered and removed before it has spread to other regions of the body.

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Cancer of the Colon

Cancer of the colon and rectum is a severe disease of the older age group, but its outlook is nearly four times better than cancer of the stomach and chances of its cure are better than 50 percent. An important factor of colon cancer as in cancer everywhere, is the question of spread of this

Fig. 91. Cancer of the colon is announced nearly half the time by rectal bleeding. It is a disease of senior years and can be treated satisfactorily when discovered early.

disease to the rest of the body. About the best thing that can happen in cancer of the colon, is to find it early before it has extended.

Discovering a colon cancer requires a physician for exact diagnosis, but we can help the physician, and ourselves, by watching for the symptoms which often accompany this disease. These symptoms though very common and frequently brushed aside, are worthy of notice.

Bleeding from the rectum is often the first indication of any trouble in the colon. Bleeding is most often caused by hemorrhoids and not by cancer, but it is always a sign that something is definitely wrong and the physician should be consulted at once.

A difference in the usual manner of bowel movements, occasional constipation or diarrhea is common in adult years, but these difficulties, if sudden and persistent, may signal definite colon trouble and an examination is in order.

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